Fibroblast growth factor 22 is not essential for skin development and repair but plays a role in tumorigenesis

PLoS One. 2012;7(6):e39436. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0039436. Epub 2012 Jun 21.


Fibroblast Growth Factors play critical roles during development, tissue homeostasis and repair by controlling cell proliferation, survival, migration and differentiation. Of the 22 mammalian FGFs, FGF22, a member of the FGF7/10/22 subfamily, has been shown to have a clear role in synaptogenesis, but its roles in other tissues have not been studied. We have investigated the in vivo functions of FGF22 in mice. Fgf22 null animals were viable, fertile and did not display any obvious abnormalities. Despite the known expression profile of FGF22 in the skin, no differences in either skin or pelage were observed, demonstrating that FGF22 is dispensable during embryogenesis and in unchallenged adult skin. Mice lacking FGF22 were able to heal acute wounds just as efficiently as wild type mice. However, classical two-step skin carcinogenesis challenge revealed that FGF22 null mice developed fewer papillomas than wild type controls, suggesting a potential pro-oncogenic role for FGF22 in the skin.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Female
  • Fibroblast Growth Factors / metabolism
  • Fibroblast Growth Factors / physiology*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic*
  • Heterozygote
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Models, Biological
  • Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Papilloma / metabolism
  • Skin / pathology
  • Wound Healing


  • Fgf22 protein, mouse
  • Fibroblast Growth Factors